UT Martin surpasses fundraising goal by $75,000

MARTIN, Tenn. — As universities struggle to prepare for on-campus teaching in the fall, many grapple with finances.

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The same could be said for University of Tennessee at Martin, who conducted their sixth annual Captain’s Challenge, where they encourage donations from alumni.

“The money all goes to support student scholarships, all our different faculty, athletics and our sponsored programs,” said UT Martin Chancellor Keith Carver.

Last year they raised around $315,000. They made this year’s goal $325,000. They blew it out of the water in a single day.

“Got the total from yesterday. We had around 1,200 people participate, and we raised $400,000, so we exceeded our goal by $75,000,” Carver said.

The original challenge date was scheduled for April, but they pushed it back when COVID-19 shutdowns were put in place.

Carver thinks with everything happening, people want to help others more than ever.

“Those feelings of melancholy create a sense of wanting to do something. I think right now we all just want to do something and help someone,” Carver said. “I think our alumni have strong attachment because of the relationships they build here.”

Carver points to their alumni video series and outreach efforts as a reason for the big total. However, even he admits the number was surprising.

“We’re just extremely blessed with everyone’s generosity,” Carver said.

School officials say 57 student scholarships will receive money from the fundraising total.

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